With the majority of significant deals having been made in the 2021 NBA free agency window, it is a good time to consider which contracts could provide the best value for money in the upcoming season. The LA Lakers, Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls have all been active in their recruitment, while the Denver Nuggets and Phoenix Suns have made a few less glamorous, yet equally important, moves in the offseason.
With the hype that surrounds NBA free agency, it is often the case that teams overpay a player just to solve a problem or to thwart their rivals from taking him instead. However, some players can be signed on team-friendly deals due to various extraneous circumstances such as previous injuries, lack of free agency interest or because of a sub-par campaign.
In this article, we will list what we believe to be the top five value contracts agreed in the 2021 NBA free agency window so far.
Five Players who could prove to be value signings from the 2021 NBA Free Agency
#5 Carmelo Anthony
When you add Russell Westbrook to a lineup that includes LeBron James and Anthony Davis, not only do you re-affirm your status as favorites but you also attract ring-chasers on team-friendly contracts.
That is what the LA Lakers have managed to do, brining in the likes of Dwight Howard, Trevor Ariza, Malik Monk and Wayne Ellington on minimum deals in NBA free agency. The player that could have the most effect in the upcoming season who signed a veteran contract, though, is Carmelo Anthony.
Anthony is a long-time friend of LeBron James off the court and brings with him a wealth of NBA experience. After being a regular starter for so long in his career, the 37-year-old had to embrace coming off the bench last year. However, he thrived in the role for the Portland Trail Blazers.
Playing in all but three of the Blazers' regular-season games, Anthony averaged 13.4 points and 3.1 rebounds per night, which was his most-efficient scoring campaign since 2017. He also shot the three-ball with the highest accuracy of his career - 40.9%.
Bringing in that kind of bench scoring on such a team-friendly deal is only going to benefit the Lakers and will have created envy around the NBA.
#4 Kemba Walker
Although Kemba Walker's performances have been up and down this season and he only played in 46 games for the Boston Celtics, he was still able to average 19.3 points per contest and 4.9 assists.
Considering the fact that he only put up one less point per game and grabbed more steals than last season in which he was named an All-Star, signing him could prove immensely valuable to the New York Knicks. Especially when it was for only $18m over two years. For an All-Star caliber player, NBA teams can expect to be paying at least triple that figure.
He was priced low due to past injuries, but the Knicks have suitable backups in Derrick Rose and Immanuel Quickley who can fill in to help manage Walker's minutes. Few signings in NBA free agency will bring with them a higher upside than what Kemba Walker will.